For those of us who are old enough to remember the days of balata balls and when woods were actually woods (I do find it funny how Roger Maltbie seems to be the only golf commentator on the planet who appropriately calls it a 3 metal, not 3 wood), we can all think back to what a different world these 460cc driver heads have sprung upon us (pun intended).  The days of persimmon headed woods and 6,400 yard courses are long gone, well mostly anyway.

One of the main stories of today’s PGA Show was Cleveland Golf’s reach back into the past with the Cleveland Classic driver.  Appropriately named, the Classic driver incorporates a traditional persimmon-like look with a wood-like paint job on the crown, along with the appearance of a throwback metal face and sole plate.  Make no mistake; this club epitomizes cutting edge 2012 golf club technology with its ultra-deep face and high MOI to correct off-center hits.  The club comes in three different weight options- 270, 290 or 310 grams with varying shaft weights starting at 39 grams, providing maximum ball speed and ultimately more distance.

The club sets up extremely well, as I felt like the old persimmon-like look allowed me to align easier and therefore gave me more confidence knowing that I was set up square to my target.  The club had an excellent feel and the ball felt hot off the face.

Players like Keegan Bradley, David Toms and long-bombing PGA Tour rookie Jason Kokrak have already put the new Cleveland Classic driver into play.  It’s definitely one of those throwbacks to the past that is worth more than just a look.

Joel Harrington